Echo: Texture, Repetition, and Pattern at E11even 2
“It’s a themed show, but it isn’t so tightly specific to an image or a specific story line,” said R!ch Cihlar, Co-owner of E11even 2 and curator of Echo.
The title of the show is “Echo: an exhibition on textures, repetition, and patterns.” The loose parameters set for the artists led to an assortment of interpretations of these themes. Generally speaking, the human mind is drawn to patterns. We crave uniformity and find pleasure in repetition. Many of the works on display adhere to this idea of organization, while others focus more heavily on color and texture, reflecting the chaotic and visceral aspects of life which we simultaneously yearn for.
Echo features works from fifteen different artists, some being new-comers like Dan Kearsey, and others being veterans, like George Kocar, who Cihlar describes as a “Cleveland Icon.” The artists and their works are multifarious, pieces on display range from impressionistic landscapes to Warhol-esque pop-art. Recognizing this diversity is key in understanding the exhibit as a whole.
“Some of these pictures the artist just used a paint-knife for texture, and some of them are actually stenciled patterns, others are color gradations. So it was a loose topic, but an easy one that a lot of our artists that we represent could lock into and not feel that there are too many parameters,” said Cihlar.
Cihlar’s statement about the paint-knife may refer to Eileen Dorsey’s paintings: “Soft Light 1” and “Small Branches,” which are featured in the show. Dorsey paints contemporary impressionistic landscapes: wooded scenes, mostly in oil and acrylic paints. “The texture of the paint is what I’m going for. The way that I manipulate the oil paint is I use a pallet knife, I don’t use a brush at all,” said Dorsey.
“With Soft Light 1, I am incorporating another element. I actually had two separate canvases, one that was painted the way I was just describing, and another one that was an acrylic painting, and I squashed them together to create this print, like a ghost image. So you can see the ripple effect of where the canvas is pulling off the oil paint.”
Other pieces in the show focus more on repetition and rigid patterns, rather than texture alone. Bob Peck’s “Race to the Finish” and “Inside Us All” are explosive canvases, brimming with vitality and color. Cihlar’s “Target Practice” utilizes bottle caps arranged in kind of a geometric target, creating a physical and visual texture.
This eclectic collection of artwork somehow works together to create a cohesive exhibition. The variation caters well to any audience, who’s tastes are bound to be equally varied.
The open gallery space at E11even 2 lends itself nicely to the exhibit, inviting the viewer to move freely about the room and to take time to become immersed in the experience, while reflecting on the themes of the show. On the day of the opening, light poured through the large window at the back of the gallery. The window itself almost entirely makes up the back wall of the room, and has been colorfully decorated with a geometric pattern of translucent plastic, creating a vibrant light display on the floor of the gallery. Perfectly reflecting the themes of the exhibition.
Cihlar is hopeful and excited about the show. “I hope that our guests are satisfied, our artists are satisfied, and everyone has a good time,” He said. “The art is important, but the experience is what we are always in search of.”
Echo is located at E11even 2 gallery, 78th Street Studios. The exhibit opens March 16th and remains open until April 20th.